Thursday, September 26, 2019


Eileen made this queen size version of Boomerang by Jaybird Quilts.  It is a gift for her nephew.  Eileen used the same fabrics as the cover of the pattern and wondered about having me do some custom quilting as if would show up so well on the solid fabrics.

We different quilting options including custom, and pantographs.  I asked her if her nephew would would appreciate the extra effort and cost of custom quilting.  She was pretty sure he wouldn't notice.  His mom was also sure he wouldn't notice!  So instead we focused on choosing a quilting design with a masculine feel that complimented the piecing.  Vertical wavy lines was the choice and I think it is a winner!

I am a handguided long arm quilter - no computer here, so I chalked the one line on the quilt to make sure I had what I saw in my head, and then I just echoed freehand for the rest of the quilt. There are variations, but I don't mind that as it feels hand made, not mass produced.

Eileen chose a navy Stonehenge backing from the selection I have on hand and I think it compliments it nicely.

Tuesday, September 24, 2019

Allie Owl

I quilted this cute owl wall hanging as my first project back to make sure my longarm was working properly after the move.  My friend Reneta pieced the top for me.  The pattern is by Elizabeth Hartman and is called Allie Owl.

The quilting on the owl was pretty easy for me to figure out, but how to handle the back ground had me stumped and ripping a bit.  I am really happy with the final design choice now!

I was asked by my daughter to make a travel pouch for her new wireless head phones.  I came across this "Multipurpose zipper pouch" by Peggy Sews that was just the right thing with its tapered shape and flat bottom.  It comes in 5 sizes with a free easy to print pdf.  You can find it on the Peggy Sews page  here.  I used Soft and Stable instead of batting and added a few quilting lines, but otherwise I followed the instructions and will definitely make it again.

Monday, September 23, 2019

Back in Business

We have been in our new home for about a month and a half and my sewing area is unpacked and organized.... for now.  The basement in our house was finished but the main area was one very large room.  Our basement is about 1900 sq. ft, and I would say that about 3/4 of it was just one large room.  The previous owners left a MASSIVE 100+ year old, 6' x 12' snooker table for us, and I am currently trying to sell that as it takes up too much space - see below.

This is the view standing on the basement stairs.  I used a some of my old sewing furniture, some new to me old furniture and some random furniture pieces to define a space.  We will build a proper wall and built in storage and add proper lighting eventually.  My wonderful husband put up three temporary shop lights so that I could function as it was very dim down there.

The longarm is up and working and ready for client quilts again.

We removed this bar which then made room for my sewing machine and more.

And here is my wall of storage pieces that divides my space from the TV area.  The brown dresser has all my thread and pantographs for longarm quilting.   The shelf with the blue bins has my serger, cover lock, client quilts and my fabric stash and projects.

As I was unpacking I took the time to reorganize my fabric stash by color for the most part.  These are fabrics that aren't set aside for a current project (those are boxed and bagged with the associated pattern).   

I used my standard 6" x 24" ruler to fold everything to the same dimensions. (You could use any size ruler that will produce a finished size to fit your storage areas.)  It took a bit of time but it really made it easier to organize and use space efficiently.  I wrapped everything from from fat 1/8s to yardage to wide backs this way.
  1. Lay your fabric down on a flat surface.  I put my selvage edge(s) on the right and fold (for full width fabric) or cut edge for a FQ on the left.  Lay your ruler down and wrap edge of fabric around it.
  2. Roll your fabric around your ruler until you come to the end.  
  3. Leave the end of the fabric as is,  or fold it under a bit if it ended at an awkward spot close to the edge.
  4. Remove your ruler.
  5. Fold in half once.
  6. Fold in half a second time.

Monday, September 9, 2019

Atomic Starburt


September is upon us and I am finally starting to feel organized after our move from Dauphin, MB to Selkirk, MB at the beginning of August.  There are still boxes to unpack and pictures to hang, but it is feeling better everyday.  In between unpacking and trying to find time to enjoy some summer activities, we moved daughter #2 in to residence at the University of Manitoba for her first year, so our new home is also feeling the effects of an empty nest.  I am happy to finally share Kendra's grad/dorm room quilt!

The pattern is called Atomic Starburst by Violet Craft.  I added more blocks to the original pattern so that it would be more of a single bed size. Kendra and I looked at many examples of this pattern with heavy custom quilting, but somehow that just didn't feel right for us.  Freehand wavy lines let the pattern and fabrics shine. The stars and diamonds are Alison Glass Sunrprints by Andover, background is Simply Neutral by Northcott, and the wide backing is Rhoda Ruth by Robert Kaufman.

I always love to add some personalization in the quilting when I can.  I interrupted the wavy lines to add these details.

I made two throw pillow covers from some of the leftovers. I loosely followed this Diamond Lattice Pillow tutorial from I think they turned out pretty cute and were really easy.

Here is a close up of the quilting on those.  I wanted the diamonds to pop so I added tight u-turns in the sashing.

And here you can see the ensemble in action!